Pleistocene Animal, Hyaenodon

Pleistocene Animals

Pleistocene animals, also known as megafauna, are from a time just prior to recorded history.

Pleistocene Animal, Hyaenodon

This spotted canine resembles a normal hyena, but it has a blunt face, longer teeth, and is overall much larger and more vicious than its cousin.


XP 200 ()

Unaligned Large

Initiative +2


AC 13 (natural armor)

hp: 44 (8d10)


Speed: 50 ft.

Melee Attack—Bite: +6 to hit (reach 5 ft.; one creature). Hit: 2d6 + 4 piercing damage and the target must make a successful DC 14 Dex saving throw or be grappled; see Scrapping for Food, below. A hyaenodon can’t bite while it has a target grappled.


Str 18 (+4), Dex 14 (+2), Con 11 (+0),

Int 7 (–2), Wis 12 (+1), Cha 6 (–2)

Languages: None

Skills: Perception +3

Senses: Darkvision 60 ft.


Keen Senses: Hyaenodons have tactical advantage on Perception checks based on smell.

Pack Tactics: A hyaenodon has tactical advantage on its attack roll if the target is already grappled by at least one other hyaenodon.

Scrapping for Food: A creature that is grappled by one or more hyaenodons takes damage automatically at the start of its turn. It takes 1d6 + 4 piercing damage from the first grappling hyaenodon, 2d6 + 4 from the second hyaenodon, 3d6 + 4 from the third hyaenodon, and so on. Up to four hyaenodons can grapple the same Small or Medium creature. Up to six can grapple a Large creature.


Environment: Temperate and arid

Organization: Solitary, pair, or pack (3–18)

The hyaenodon, sometimes called the short-faced hyena, is a larger relative of the common hyena. Hyaenodons (and hyenas) are generally thought of as scavengers, but they are skilled hunters capable of taking down large prey—very large prey, in the case of the hyaenodon. When food is scarce, hyaenodons cover large areas individually in search of food, relying primarily on their sense of smell to locate potential prey.

Hyaenodons hunt both alone and in packs led by a single leader. They eat carrion they find lying on the ground or abandoned by other carnivores, but such treasure is scarce in the hyaenodons’ world, and their size and ferocity enable them to fill their bellies with their own kills. Favored meals include deer, elk, moose, zebras, bison, lions, brontotheriums, and even mastodons.

Hyaenodons up to Huge size have been reported, but never in packs. They are solitary hunters. Aside from these monsters, the largest typical hyaenodons grow to lengths of 8 feet.